An anti-Zwarte Piet activist has been cleared of assaulting a police officer during a demonstrationin Gouda two years ago by judges in The Hague.
Jerry Afriyie was one of 90 people arrested while demonstrating during the official arrival of Sinterklaas in Gouda in 2014. All but Afriyie were given on-the-spot fines of €220 and released the same evening. The public prosecution department decided to take further action against Afriyie because he resisted arrest.
Afriyie denied the charges and says he feared for his life because of the violence used by the police in breaking up the demonstration.
The court ruled that the police used excessive force when making the arrest as there was no threat to public order. However, the fact that Afriyie grabbed the leg of one of the police officers with considerable force was a panic reaction and not, therefore, a criminal offence, the judges said.
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